The Grand Immersia Hotel is a real-life escape room livestreamed and played through an avatar, created by Immersia in Boisbriand, Quebec, Canada.
Room Escape Artist reviewed the real-life version of this game in March of 2020 and awarded it a 2020 Golden Lock Award. This is a review of the online adaptation.
Style of Play: real-life escape room livestreamed and played through an avatar
Required Equipment: computer with internet connection
Recommended Team Size: 2-5
Play Time: 60 minutes
Price: 99.96 CAD for group of 4 / 24.99 CAD each additional connection
Booking: book online for a specific time slot
This is an avatar-led game that takes you through multiple spaces in the soon-to-open Grand Immersia Hotel. It combined Zoom with a standard inventory system in Telescape.
Hivemind Review Scale
Joel Smileypeacefun Reaction
In this outstanding game, we had to sneak around a hotel without being caught. It was quite a challenge, given the game felt like the size of an actual hotel floor.
At its best, all the puzzles translated well to remote online gameplay. It’s smart how they presented a good number of puzzles that were all doable, rather than having fewer puzzles with a frustrating difficulty.
At its worst, the large spaces within the game felt underused. I found myself wanting to explore the rooms in greater detail than we ended up doing. Instead, a lot of drawers, shelves, and other props were just straight-up empty. I left with a feeling of missed potential from underusing the set.
This large-scale, puzzle-friendly game with a little in-game character interaction definitely made for a good time.
Tammy McLeod’s Reaction
This was a traditional escape room converted to an avatar-style online game. Our avatar played his part convincingly, and the experience was translated well to the new format. The puzzles played smoothly and despite the slightly cheesy videos, I had a lot of fun.
The Lone Puzzler’s Reaction
A quite enjoyable large game environment with a very immersive story and set. The game itself was perhaps a bit easier than I expected – plenty of puzzles, but most a bit on the simpler side. The fast pace and heart-racing nature of some of the game interactions made up for this as it truly felt (even via an avatar) that you were in the middle of something big. The intermixing of video and other tech tricks definitely increased the adventure while also leading you through the space. The avatar interaction was very good although a few times it felt like we were being herded along and a little lighter touch may have added to the feeling of independent discovery. Overall a very solid and entertaining game.
Cara Mandel’s Reaction
The Grand Immersia Hotel was, in a word, “epic.” I found myself wishing I were there playing in person. And I liked the game enough that I can say with certainty I’d be willing to play again in person should that opportunity ever arise. The setting was expansive and immersive. The puzzles were enjoyable, but not overly challenging. The story was fun and the video content helped us feel immersed within it. My only note (and I want to clarify that this may vary from computer to computer) was with the Telescape sound effects. Each time a new object was found the sound that played was so loud and piercing that I actually had to remove my headset. Unfortunately, I spent a good portion of gameplay googling to try and find a way to turn down the volume in my Chrome Browser without lowering volume in Zoom. Ultimately, the solution to this is an add-on for Mac users. So my gift to you is the suggestion to install this (or a similar) plugin prior to playing so you can adjust volume in-game.
David Spira’s Reaction
I played this game both in real life and digitally. The Grand Immersia Hotel was a remarkably faithful avatar adaption of this phenomenal 2020 Golden Lock Award-winning escape room. It’s a great game.
If you don’t see yourself getting to Montreal, then play it online. It’s good fun, and lovingly crafted.
That said… if you think that you’ll make it to Montreal when the world settles down, then I’d encourage you to wait and play it in real life. It will be a part of our 2021 Escape Immerse Explore Tour to Montreal. These premium games are so much more magical in person.
Disclosure: Immersia provided the Hivemind reviewers with a complimentary play.